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Polish Hat Eagles

Article about: In my opinion this particular cap eagle was made by G.J. Garratt Toronto. Very unique, hard to find.

  1. #2131

    Default

    Hello Everyone,

    Currently up for sale on ebay along with the owners Monte Cassino Cross and 5BCKM and 5KDP Badges the following Cap Badge, I would like to hear your thoughts on this one.

    Polish Hat Eagles

    Polish Hat Eagles

    Best wishes

    Andrzej

  2. #2132

    Default

    Looks like a Bari Eagle. Produced in 1946.
    NIE ZAPOMNIJMY O KRESACH.

    TAK BEDZIE JAK BOG DA.

  3. #2133

    Default

    Yes - Bari Eagle. Rare one.


    Quote by Krakow1 View Post
    Looks like a Bari Eagle. Produced in 1946.

  4. #2134

    Default

    Hello Wadowicznic,

    Many thanks for your reply, that might explain the reason for the MCC, 5BCKM Badge and 5KDP Badge selling for £1,500.00p

    Best wishes

    Andrzej

  5. #2135

    Default

    Yes - God Bless the Buyer

    Quote by andrzejku98 View Post
    Hello Wadowicznic,

    Many thanks for your reply, that might explain the reason for the MCC, 5BCKM Badge and 5KDP Badge selling for £1,500.00p

    Best wishes

    Andrzej
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Polish Hat Eagles  

  6. #2136

    Default

    Evidently the winner is indeed blessed to have that much disposable income. Quite a result.

    Regards.
    Tony
    All thoughts and opinions expressed are those of my own and should not be mistaken for medical and/or legal advice.

    "Tomorrow hopes we have learned something from yesterday." - John Wayne

  7. #2137

    Default Silver Eagle with Legit

    Recently purchased silver eagle given to British Major B W Hemmings with attached Legit.Polish Hat EaglesPolish Hat EaglesPolish Hat EaglesPolish Hat Eagles

  8. #2138

    Default Silver Eagle 2

    Polish Hat Eagles

  9. #2139
    ?

    Default 'dorava' Bullion Eagle

    I am the buyer of the bullion eagle mentioned in post No: #1983 made on 25th June 2018 by Krakow1 in which he posted a screen shot of the eBay listing’s closing bid at GBP113.00 (12bids) and stating that the eagle patch was ‘a modern copy of a bullion thread eagle that sold last weekend.’ Krakow1 then went on to state ‘These were sold on eBay in regular and aged versions. A side by side showing both versions is pictured here.’ He had included 2 images of bullion eagles, an ‘aged’ version, not the bullion eagle which I had purchased, and another which can be assumed to be the ‘regular’ version. He went on to state ‘someone’ (me!) believed the sellers description that it (the bullion eagle listed on eBay) was genuine and then concluded ‘Costly error.’

    Being a collector of mainly Polish militaria for some years I try to visit the forum whenever I have the opportunity and I enjoy reading the many varied and interesting posts on the forum. However, I was quite taken aback when I saw Krakow1’s post and even more so when I scrolled down and found further posts made later the same day. Firstly by A.J Zawadski showing Krakow1’s original post and stating ‘This reproduction is still available here’, and providing a link to the eBay seller of the ‘aged’ and ‘regular’ bullion eagle copies.

    A post from 'dorava' followed confirming on the forum that he was the seller of the bullion eagle in question and reiterating that (in his opinion) ‘The eagle is original’ suggesting that the images should be examined more carefully and it could be seen that the eagle patches were similar but not the same, that ‘the repro is a good copy but the original one is different’ and further adding ‘The eagle has the thumbs up from the Sikorski Institute’, ‘I trust their opinion’, ‘none of us are infallible’ and concluding ‘I do my utmost to make sure the items I sell are original, and therefore do not appreciate flippant comments implying that I purchase repros and doctor them to seem authentic’.

    Further posts followed from A.J Zawadski agreeing with dorava that ‘nobody is infallible’ and stating ‘even museum curators learn new things’ – perhaps a reference to dorava’s comment relating to the Sikorski museum?

    A.J Zawadski went on to state that he had an image of 'this eagle' (the ‘aged’ repro?) in his “fake/copy” archive when they were being sold on ebay as aged reproductions.’ And included an image of what can be assumed to be the aged reproduction bullion eagle.

    Even more posts followed from all three parties, followed by a new post by wadowicznic taking a more pragmatic outlook and clearly stating the pitfalls of trying to evaluate such 'Bajorek' (bullion) patches without actually seeing the item in the flesh or having it ‘in your hands.’ It was at this point that I decided it was time for me to contact the seller.

    After discussing the matter with 'dorava' it quickly became clear that as well as both being rather upset by the posts on the forum and that despite the negative views we both firmly believed the bullion eagle patch to be a genuine WW2 period item.

    Having previously purchased many items from this seller and having always been very pleased with the items I have received, his knowledge, advice and perhaps more importantly his frank honesty, it was no surprise that he immediately made a full refund of the purchase price of the eagle until such time as the authenticity of the item was proven one way or another and I had decided if I wanted to retain the item for my collection. Indeed why wouldn't I believe that the seller's description was genuine in these circumstances and the fact that he, as 'gzegosh' has 100% positive feedback with over 1,500 eBay sales!

    As a process design engineer of many years and whose ethos revolves around the saying that 'the devil is in the detail' I decided that I wanted to get to the bottom of this issue and decide for myself one way or another as to whether or not the bullion eagle was genuine or fake. From experience I know that it is not always necessary to have the answers but it is certainly necessary to know where to find the answers and perhaps just as importantly not to be influenced by emotions or opinions but to deal only with facts which cannot be disputed.

    It was quite clear to me that even based on the comparison of the images of the ‘aged’ and ‘regular’ eagles posted by Krakow1 and the eagle I had purchased there were numerous differences. With this in mind, and with dorava's agreement, I contacted Tomasz Zawitowski who was well known to us both and being the author of numerous publications and books on the subject of Polish cap eagle badges should be considered as one of the world’s foremost experts on the subject and therefore someone who’s opinion we both respected.

    Echoing the post by wadowicznic Tomasz informed me that a number of people had contacted him regarding this eagle and said that he was sorry but could not say anything based on photos alone and that having the item ' .. in your hand you can say much more about it..' in terms of '.. aging, sewing marks, metal surface quality ..' and even recommended inspection under a microscope!

    So the bullion eagle was shipped to Tomasz for his opinion and in the meantime I also sent images of the front and back of the eagle to, Arkadiusz Pawlowski, a long time friend, well respected collector and seller of high quality genuine Polish militaria items based in Poland who has been revered on the forum and whose opinion and advice I have always trusted for almost 20 years.

    The response quickly came back with the preliminary opinion, based solely on the images provided, that: 'The eagle looks good, but is not a typical model. I do not know where it could be made. Probably Italy.' Soon after word also came back from Tomasz Zawitowski who stated: 'I got the eagle and it is ok in my opinion. I understand some doubts about it's colour but we never know conditions the object was aged. I think this one is doubtless.'

    After sharing the comments from these two very well respected Polish militaria experts with dorava, the eagle was returned to me from Tomasz for further inspection and for me to determine whether or not I wanted to keep the item. I attach a signed photo of the eagle in question from Tomasz stating his opinion of it being an original WW2 item.

    Polish Hat Eagles

    After Tomasz had returned the bullion eagle I decided it could be a good idea to purchase one of the known copy/repro bullion eagles from the eBay seller in the link posted by A.J Zawadski in order to make a more detailed comparison of both items.

    Polish Hat Eagles Polish Hat Eagles

    The known copy arrived and on preliminary comparison of both items using magnifying equipment of various powers, the following obvious differences were noted. The bullion thread to the dorava item was of a slightly finer gauge in all areas but with a slightly thicker inner thread. The crown, feet and wing details showed variations. There were numerous variations in the pattern of the bullion inlays to the body, wings etc. Even taking into account the assumed hand-made nature of both items there were numerous dimensional variations including: crown width and height, wing tip to wing tip, width and depth of the Amazon shield, the overall height of bullion work and the overall width of the bullion work.

    In the hand, the bullion on dorava’s item is flatter than the known copy and the backing material looks and feels to be of a finer weave and softer material. Inspecting the reverse of both eagles was the first real clue to the vastly differing histories of these items. The 'dorava' eagle presented uncovered open stitch-work construction as is commonly found in many genuine WW2 Polish cap eagles made in Italy.

    The known copy had a glued cloth covering to the reverse side thereby hiding the stitching construction. Undeterred I decided to remove what turned out to be a strongly glued backing material to the known copy to expose the details of the patches construction and stitching details.

    Polish Hat Eagles Polish Hat Eagles

    It was clear that the basic construction differed significantly with a grey glued bonding material holding together the front and back felt layers of the known copy, this not being present in the dorava eagle patch. The known copy appeared to use thread of a slightly finer gauge but with a thicker bullion covering and it's outer bullion work's thickness being slightly bigger than that of the dorava eagle.

    Both white and yellow threads were present to the construction of the ‘gold’ crown, beak and claws of the known copy whereas the thread work to the dorava eagle was only found in an off white coloured cotton. With the back-work construction of the known copy now fully exposed both sides of both patches were placed under a UV lighting source. I believe that the side by side comparisons speak for themselves, but once again distinct differences were noted in that both the obverse and reverse of the dorava eagle showed no signs of fluorescence whereas both sides of the known copy eagle presented clear signs of fluorescence which is commonly associated with the use of modern synthetic construction materials. Materials used in the WW2 era, and early thereafter, are usually of cotton or rayon which do not fluoresce.

    Polish Hat Eagles Polish Hat Eagles

    During the course of my examination of the two bullion eagle patches I met with a friend at a local Militaria Fair who is a very well respected collector and dealer of mainly German WW2 militaria (which is prolifically copied) of more than 50 years. I gave the items to him for his ‘in hand’ opinion. Interestingly the first thing he did was to ‘smell’ the items, stating that it is possible to fake most things but it is virtually impossible to fake the smell of genuine artifacts. I learned about some of the methods, materials and liquids which are known to be used in creating fake patches etc, some of which are truly disgusting!

    My friends conclusion was that the known fake/copy was undoubtedly one of high quality and that in his opinion the dorava bullion eagle was ‘good’ and ‘genuine to the WW2 period.’

    Interestingly my friend told me that if I wanted to be 100% sure of any differences between the two bullion eagle patches I should carry out a ‘burn’ test on a small sample of the material from each patch. This possibility immediately grabbed and focused my attention and I subsequently arranged to carry out this test on small samples of each bullion eagle patch, the results are as follows:

    First burn testsample material from known 'copy/repro' bullion eagle
    The material appeared to melt rather than burn and gave off a substantial amount of black smoke, leaving a substantial residue which would not reignite despite several attempts.

    Second burn testsample material from ‘dorava’ bullion eagle
    The material took light and burned very quickly without any noticeable smoke, although a smaller material sample (as by this point I had pretty much decided that the dorava eagle was worth keeping!), left little or no residue which would not reignite.

    I have to confess that after my initial disappointment and upset at the forum posts and their comments I have quite enjoyed the process of carrying out the investigative work on these patches.

    Now reviewing my findings I believe that there are lessons to be shared: -

    • Firstly, it would be foolish to judge a bullion eagle patch, or any other medal or badge etc, only from an image of the observe/front side.
    • Having the object concerned ‘in hand’ for evaluation is worth a dozen images.
    • Knowledge and facts are crucial, so don’t be afraid to question the opinion of others, no matter who they are.
    • There is never any harm in asking for the opinion or seeking guidance from others more experienced than yourself who you trust.
    • Research, detailed comparison and testing is key to establishing a definitive conclusion.

    From the research, comparisons and testing which I have now done and taking into consideration all the available facts and expert 'in hand' opinions from trusted and respected individuals regarding this bullion eagle patch I can only conclude that the 'dorava' bullion eagle is a genuine (and taking into consideration Mr Zawadski's point about the eagle not being found in any reference book) perhaps rare eagle patch rather than an allegedly disparaged runt of a copy.

    Clearly the known copy has probably been based on a known genuine, probably rare, original bullion eagle example ... who's to say that the dorava eagle is not that eagle?

    Regardless, rather than be deserving of any pity, I believe the badge deserves to retain its place in my collection (or any other for that matter) as an authentic WW2 period item with perhaps an increased level of desirability and of which I am pleased to be the present owner and guardian! Obviously these are my own thoughts and opinions based upon my research and others are free to draw their own conclusions.

    Suum cuique.

  10. #2140
    ?

    Default

    Congratulations Jaros, and thank you. ..Tremendous dedication, investigation and work on this subject....very well done!

    Fiat Lux – Ostensum Est Veritas Realis
    Cave Constanter Accusantes

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